We took a little weekend trip to Disneyland to celebrate our
anniversary. It was supposed to be a romantic weekend of poolside
mojitos and the Disney’s California Adventure Food & Wine Festival.
We had hired a nanny to join us for the weekend so as to rid ourselves of the boys and
partake in some quality childfree fun. The nanny backed out.

We
could have left the boys at home. The dogs stayed. A big bowl of
Goldfish and the toilet seat up, they would have been fine. We would
have felt guilty though, we couldn’t go off to Disneyland and not take
the boys. Hence, the nanny. Needless to say, the boys came along, and
the wine was corked for another year.

Despite the fact that it
was probably their worst weekend of behavior ever, we still managed to
squeeze in more fun than frustration. Barely.

I’ve decided that
is one of the cornerstones of parenting, and few places put it to the
test like Disneyland. Behavior in children is magnified tenfold while
at the parks, everything is to the extreme. There are outside factors
for the parents as well, heat, lines, rude people, money, all on top of
whatever fingernails our own children are running down our personal
chalkboard. The two should never meet, but of course they are loaded
guns wrapped around the trigger of the other. Shots will be fired.

The
trick, and of course this is easier said than done, is to continue to
parent and use the situations that arise as opportunities to teach
manners and positive behavior, and possibly learn a thing about them
oursleves. It is important to be a parent and still have fun.
Disneyland, contrary to popular belief, is not just for the kids, and
for everyone to have the best time possible, everyone must be able to
move past the negative and back into the positive with as little
fanfare as they can muster. We’re having fun dammit!

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One
of the obstacles that we faced this trip was actually the doing of
Disney more than anyone else. There were large areas of the park that
were closed or restricted, some due to renovation, which is fine, I’m
always glad to see the park being treated well. However, the largest
and most inconvienent areas were that way to accomodate the
upcoming premier of the new Pirates movie.

I understand the
coolness of having the premier at Disneyland. I really do. It just
doesn’t seem right that a whole land of the park should be covered and
roped and closed for over two weeks so that Johnny Depp can see himself
act like a pirate. Again.

What about the Griswalds? They just
drove 1,ooo miles to see Fantasmic! and guess what folks, it ain’t
happening. The moose out front should have told you.

Obviously
much of the information pertaining to such events is on the website,
but not everyone has access or the savvy to check such things. Also,
when a family is planning a trip years in advance and saving every
penny for it, they aren’t going to be flexible enough to change dates
to work around every mess that arises, and that is unfortunate.

I’ve
never considered the idea before, and I can’t say that I would favor
such a thing, but should Disneyland close for a few weeks out of the
year to clean it’s wounds and catch it’s breath, rather than subject
unknowing travlers to an experience that is less than they deserve?
They can see cones and drop clothes at home.

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